Welcome to Moscow Gourmet Kitchen! My name is Irina and I love to cook. I grew up in Moscow, Russia, eating all sorts of delicious food lovingly and skillfully prepared by my mother and grandmother and reflecting our family's heritage and culture. We are Ashkenazi Jews, with both my parents (and me) born in Russia and all four of my grandparents born in Ukraine. On my parents' and grandparents' tables, chopped liver peacefully coexisted with salted pork fat, and kreplach made an appearance just as frequently as pelmeni and vareniki.
My first task in the kitchen was cranking the handle of our cast-iron meat grinder, mincing beef and pork for kotlety or churning out herring vorschmack. Later I progressed to filling dozens of piroshki the night before guests were expected for dinner, flipping kefir-based oladyi in a cast-iron skillet, and even (I shudder to think of it today) cold-bloodedly beheading and gutting batches of smelt, to be pan-fried and served with mashed potatoes for dinner. Right around that time also came the baking experiments instigated by my adventuresome older sister when we were occasionally left alone at home. Let's just say that the apartment did not burn down, that no teeth were lost by chomping down on donuts that contained no leavening, and that these were valuable learning experiences in a number of ways.
Fast forward to today: a nonprofit worker by day, I've been putting on my chef's hat (strictly figuratively speaking; I hate hats) in the evenings and weekends since 2009 in order to indulge my passion for sharing my family's recipes and stories - further enriched by my husband's Siberian heritage - with folks in Seattle, and, most recently, in the Methow Valley, where I moved in 2016. Explore my website to learn more about my dinner parties, private cooking classes, and stock-your-freezer services. Keep an eye on the blog to stay informed about my classes at local cooking schools and special offers. Want to be the first to hear about new menu options, classes, and discounts? Email me or send a message through the Contact page with the word "subscribe" to be added to my periodic email updates.
Thank you for stopping by this space! Pour yourself a cup of tea (the Moscow way; black tea with sugar and perhaps a slice of lemon) and take some time to look around and imagine what it might be like to have your kitchen transformed into a "Moscow Gourmet Kitchen" for an evening or two...